Home Lifestyle Wingate Graduate Faculty Member of the Year shows tireless devotion to students

Wingate Graduate Faculty Member of the Year shows tireless devotion to students

Dr. Jenn Wilson, Wingate Univesity Graduate Faculty Member of the Year. Photo by Wingate Uinversity.

When it came time to nominate a colleague for Graduate Faculty Member of the Year, Wingate pharmacy professor Dawn Battise knew immediately that Jenn Wilson deserved the award.

Over the past decade, Dr. Wilson, an associate professor in the School of Pharmacy, has gone above and beyond in teaching, scholarship and service, Dr. Batisse says. And in 2021-2022, she outdid herself.

“This year, Dr. Wilson co-developed two brand new, semester-long courses in the inaugural year of the new pharmacy curriculum,” Batisse wrote in her nomination letter. “One of these courses was a hands-on skills lab that was unlike anything we had ever done. Countless hours of work went into this development, all while she continued to teach multiple existing courses in the original curriculum.”

Wilson, who lives in Waxhaw, was presented with the award during a faculty-staff luncheon in November. She says teaching a variety of topics and courses gives her a chance to try new classroom techniques.

“I believe that active learning and engagement is essential in helping students truly learn and grasp the material,” Wilson says. “I strive to help them make the connections between what they are learning in class with what they will see in practice.”

Having earned her doctor of pharmacy degree at Northern Ohio University, Wilson began teaching at Wingate in 2012 and has brought innovative strategies to the classroom, including transitioning a traditional course to team-based learning, voluntarily launching new electives to meet needs, and introducing improved assessment techniques, such as objective structured clinical exams (OSCEs), which allow students to demonstrate clinical skills in a standardized medical scenario.

“Her drive encourages those around her to set a higher standard for themselves instead of maintaining the status quo in the classroom,” Batisse says, adding that Wilson not only implements new methods but constantly assesses them to determine their effectiveness and then shares that information through manuscripts and presentations at conferences.

Batisse also cited Wilson’s work as a volunteer for HealthQuest of Union County and her service to multiple University committees and student organizations.

Wilson advises any new faculty member to get involved with students outside of the classroom through community service endeavors.


“Show students that you are passionate about what you do and that you care about them as people,” she says. “Be authentic to who you are.” And when it comes to teaching, her advice centers on flexibility: “Be open to trying new things, and be willing to adapt if things don’t go exactly as anticipated.”

Wilson chaired the School of Pharmacy’s Curriculum Committee, which led efforts to develop and launch a new curriculum in the midst of the Covid pandemic. At the national level, Wilson has recently served as chair of the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) Self-Care interest group and as co-chair of the American Pharmacists Association immunization interest group.

“The latter goes hand-in-hand with one of her roles on campus: coordinating immunizations training for all pharmacy students,” Batisse says. “This has been critical to enable our students to care for our local community at Covid immunization clinics.”

Also critical is the importance of maintaining appropriate practice sites for students, a task that falls to Wilson as the program’s director of introductory pharmacy practice experience.

“The fact that she secured sites for every student is no small feat and is a testament to her commitment to our students,” Batisse says, noting that many pharmacies have closed their doors to learners as a result of the pandemic.

Ultimately, it’s Wilson’s commitment, to students and to colleagues, that Batisse says sets her apart.

“Do you need someone to fill in for an interview, walk you through every step of developing a successful OSCE, teach you a time-saving Canvas tip, brainstorm a new classroom idea, take on additional teaching, or serve on a committee? Dr. Wilson is the person that many of us count on,” she wrote in her nomination. “Yet, at the end of her very full days, she still prioritizes time for students, and will go out of her way to adjust her schedule to spend time with them. She exemplifies the Wingate student-focused commitment.”

Wilson’s Graduate Faculty of the Year Award was one of two honors bestowed on graduate faculty members recently. The Excellence in Research and Scholarship Award went to Dr. Mary Swiggum. At the undergraduate level, Dr. Kaitlyn Niedzielski was awarded the Debra M. O’Neal Award; and Dr. Magdalena Krajewska, the Charles and Hazel Corts Award. Both awards recognize excellence in teaching.

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